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tv   MSNBC Live  MSNBC  April 7, 2013 12:00pm-2:00pm PDT

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good afternoon. i'm craig melvin. are watching msnbc, the place for politics. president obama heads to connecticut tomorrow to push for stricter gun legislation. we'll talk to one senator lobbying for reform since that fateful day in december. plus, immigration or bust? why one lawmaker theirs without an immigration deal the budget plan is dead on arrival. and later, "madmen" season six debuts tonight. we'll talk to a bona fide tv expert who says the award-winning show has changed television as we know it.
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a lot to get to. we start with our political headlines. the house and senate released their budgets. this week, it's the president's turn. planning to unveil it wednesday. dan pfeiffer talked about it this morning. seen y senior white house adviser. >> based on my bracket, i shouldn't be in the predictions business. a good chance if the republicans particularly in the house take a my way or the highway, we won't get a deal. simple as that. >> the chinese government expressed today "grave outrage," a rising grave concern, rising tensions between north and south korea. china is north korea's biggest ally. south korea is expecting a possible missile launch from the north by this wednesday. senator lindy grahsey graham tat on "meet the press" this morning. >> a provocation, it won't be business as usual by south korea. i could see a major war
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happenings in the north koreans overplay their hand this time because the republicans, and south korea, the united states and whole region is fed up with this guy. and secretary of state john kerry gave a heartfelt tribute to a member of the state department who was killed yesterday in afghanistan. ann smedinghoff. >> yesterday we lost a very bright and brave young woman. a young diplomat. we lost her to a horrific attack in afghanistan, and today our hearts are broken. >> with more, the state department employee killed in afghanistan, in tel aviv where secretary kerry landed a short time ago. a few weeks off, he met ann and described her as vivacious, smart, capable. i understand you also knew her as well. what was she like what was her
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relationship like with the afghan people? >> hi there, craig, well, anne was all of those words that secretary kerry described her as. one other word that i would add to the list was actually genuine. from the moment that i met anne just a few weeks after she arrived in afghanistan, we were introduced by a mutual friend. she'd be working with the media and did. she worked with us. helped us in any way should could. one thing that struck me all the time, she was able to keep a smile on her face. one of the few things you snee see in afghanistan. genuine smiles. even months after her arrival she kept that smile. one other thing that completely struck me, how well she worked with the afghan people. she worked well with us as western journalists, but when you see her working with the afghan journalists, it blew you away. you could tell she really thought she was making a difference, and she was. you could see it on the faces of the afghan journalists themselves, including our afghan
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producer in kabul, mourning the loss of anne today. i want to take this opportunity to offer my condolences to anne's family on behalf of all of the journalists, my friends that were journalists in afghanistan who had the pleasure of working with her. >> you were in israel, covering secretary kerry's trip there as well. he actually just returned from the region a couple weeks ago, of course. what is he working on over there right now? what's happening there in israel? >> reporter: well, secretary kerry has had to come to israel following his trip to turkey, and turkey, he spoke to turkish officials to try to mend the relationship between turkey and israel and now here trying to talk to both israeli and palestinian officials and hopes to revive a peace process that has pretty much stopped in the last several years. today he landed this afternoon. he went straight to ramallah and the west bank to meet with
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palestinian authority president mahmoud abbas. finished his meeting. he's back in jerusalem. tomorrow meet with the riisrael president, and as well as benjamin netanyahu in the coming deys. this is one of the baby steps secretary kerry wants to continue making to just reinvigorate and have the two sides talking again. >> on her friend anne and also secretary kerry's trip. good to see you. with more we go to the panel. erroll lewis, david, white house correspondent and chris, national correspondent at the national journal. good to see all of you. david, start with you. it's been reported that secretary of state kerry is planning to pitch this so-called arab peace initiative during this trip. the plan has been proposed before in 2002, again in 2007, among other things calling for the creation of a sovereign
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palestinian state. israel would also withdraw force, from the occupied territories, golan heights, gaza strip and west bank. president obama reportedly warrants it to be the backbone of any peace talks in the region. going forward. david, why re-working an old plan rather than start from scratch? >> you know, craig, one of the issues that's been around such a long time, and such a complicated matter that i think what the president was frying to to -- trying to do after he was in the region talking in general terms what he'd like to see. kniss this is a follow-up and the third time secretary ker hry ha been there since taking over as secretary. a lot of this has been around, the ideas are there. the important part, establish trust between the two sides. this is a new secretary for the u.s. president. it's a chance for a new secretary to get involved. let's bring a plan forward, and
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have more than just these generalities that the president talked about, a good start. let's maybe sit down together with this as a starting point and see if we can work something else. >> secretary kerry is also heading to seoul, south korea to talk about the growing threat there. how real is the possibility that north korea becomes the foreign policy issue that completely consumes president obama's second term? >> we want to hope for the best and hope they were walk and chew gum at the same time. crises break out wherever they break out. just because it's happening in one part of the world doesn't mean you don't have to be concerned about iran or have to be concerned about afghanistan where we're fighting a shooting war right now. yeah. he's got to deal with north korea. probably for the public, it's been really shock to hear just how bellicose the rhetoric is, talking about launching a war, launching attacks on the united states. we're usually shielded from this stuff. a lot of domestic pressure, if it rises up and gets trained on this white house to say, look, you've got to do something about
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this. we don't want to wake up every other morning and see this kid, the head of north korea, talking about bombing our cities knowing he's getting closer to being able to do so. that could create a lot of pressure. >> chris, another issue that folks are bracing for, obviously this week, back home domestically, the budget. let's switch gears now. the president, you know, having trouble inside his own party, it seems. david wrote would, change doesn't all at once or in one fall swoop. it happens because americans have to take the long view, strike a different tone from the inaugural address in january indicating the country's challenges were urgent. how frustrated are the president's supporters on issues likes gun control and liclimate change? >> very frustrated, craig. you have a president who's been unable to kind of move these big
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issues coming back from recess. the white house has an opportunity to move immigration, and gun control. the first quarter of this year was consumed by fiscal matters. the third quarter will also be consumed by fiscal matters. there's a window here to be able to do things like immigration, and gun control, and it's unclear whether or not they'll be able to get a deal. this week. we'll see whether or not republicans and democrats can come to some kind of agreement on background checks and making them much more comprehensive. that's been a big sticking point, and we have democrats who are working with more conservative republicans to try to cut a deal. no clear sense whether they can do that on immigration. they'll continue to work. there's been some progress throughout this recess on that, but we're looking that they want to roll out the gang of eight. they want to roll something out by may. an important time for some big ticket issues that the white house and congressional democrats care about to make some progress, because they have a limited window before we have to talk about fiscal matters
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again in the summertime. >> david, quoting your article there. you write, your contingent is essentially that the president's tone seems to have changed to a certain extent. >> yes, craig. i was on the trip. the president made a two-day trip to the west coast. a very public announcement about his gun legislation in denver and went on to private fund-raisers. i was able to be there as part of the press pool. interesting. he talked optimistically about the future, coming off this electi election, some of his big items on his agenda and seems to reset expectations. not overtly, subtly, saying it's going to be tough. he acknowledged the gun legislation. saying on climate change, that's really tough politically, people are more concerned about the economy. and he, point after point, except for immigration, seemed to be trying to say, it's going to take a while. may not happen quickly. that's a problem. especially with gun control. when is going to be the next time? amp another horrific shooting? no one wants that. the president is saying, i'm trying my best, trying to say i
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need your help. chip in money to the democratic party, be out there helping with the public opinion on my legislation. that's what the spread trying to do and temper expectations. >> speaking of expectations, the president's budget on wednesday, unveiling, another dinner with senate republicans. in this budget, and again, he talked about this during the fiscal cliff negotiations, put this on the table. cuts to medicare. cuts to social security. how tough of a sale is that going to be with president obama with his base, with progressives? >> the argument every president has to make with his base. this more than most. explain politics is the art of the possible. what we want and what we can get the votes for can be two different things, in bridging that gap. that's the space he's going to be in, and he's going to let everybody know, look, i'm going to get the best deal i can. the best, that's most true to the base, and what the base expects of him, but they just can't be unrealistic.
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he has to make the case that the folks who are unrealistic are the folks on the other side. unrealistic what they could get in the last election. what they could get at the budget table and paid the price politically. he's got to explain to democrats, if you want to pay the price politically, all be purists, insist on the perfect program and go down in flames and lose control over more of the government. lose control of the senate, and could get put deeper in the hole in the house. an interesting conversation. i'd love to be at some of those fund-raisers. >> thank you, gentlemen, appreciate your time. >> thank you. >> thanks. the world lost a fashion icon today. designer lily pulitzer died this morning at her home in palm beach. she was perhaps best known for creating a bright floral dress. as legend has it, she ran an orange juice stand in earlier years and discovered it made quite a mess of her cleanings and came up with a clever idea
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creating dresses with colorful tropical minutes to camouflage the stains. the idea sparked a sensation and soon dresses could be found on the likes of jacqueline and caroline kennedy. the queen of prep. she was 81 years old. next, connecticut state senator, pushing for gun reform since the newtown massacre. what's she's got to say about state's gun reform overall and president obama's visit tomorrow? she's standing by live. wheels up for stephen colbert. literally. wheels up. we'll give you the colbert report why he was riding around the capitol on this thing this week. good thing he was wearing a helmet. stay with us. [ female announcer ] switch to swiffer wetjet, and you'll dump your old mop. but don't worry, he'll find someone else. ♪ who's that lady? ♪ who's that lady? ♪ sexy lady
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reminds me of the clowns at the circus. they get the most attention. that's what he's paid to do. this guy is so out of wack, it's unbelievable. >> connecticut governor dan malloy on cnn talking about nra head man, wayne lapierre, connecticut has a tough new gun law. the law bans more than 160 assault-style weapons, restrict high capacity magazines and requires background checks on all gun sales including the private sale of guns. president obama will be in hartford monday pressing his gun reform legislation. connecticut state senator was an early backer of tougher gun laws in the wake of the newtown shooting. good to see you, beth. >> good to see you. thanks for having me. >> the bipartisan bill signed into law. were you there when the gorchter sirened it. there you are in that picture hugging newtown parent nichol
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hickley at the signing ceremony. how meaningful for you and the families was the passage of the bill? >> oh, so meaningful to the families. they were so discouraged with what was happening in washington, and i think they real wanted a bipartisan bill, so the idea that they came together in a way and had a conversation, that was respectful, and that we were able to do that at the legislature and have the strong backing of governor malloy was something that was very gratifying for them, but at the same time, it was such a sad day, because we all wish we hadn't been there. we all wished that, you know, as she says, home waiting for her kids to get home from school, instead are trying to make change in america. >> you mentioned washington. a few moments ago there. let's talk about the effort that gun control reform effort. do you think they waited too long in washington, d.c.? do you think they waited too long, and do you think their strategy heretofore has been sufficient? >> it's difficult to know what's too long.
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connecticut was criticized for taking too long. hey, we had a democratic governor, strong majorities in both house. why didn't we push a strong bill right through? it's about having a conversation and listening to all sides. i had quite an education and landed in different places on what was most important in the bill after listening to gun owners, being in their living rooms and out at gun clubs, but also listening to folks who wanted common sense change. i think it does take time and it does take listening. >> the nra has made a point of dismissing gun preform, certain gun reforms, like the ones passed in connecticut. listen to what wayne lapierre said on fox news. take a listen. >> adam lanza, you know, his mother wars a legal gun owner and how do you know that this person, that his mother, would not have obeyed the law and limited the magazine clip and then adam lanza limited to ten rounds instead of 30? >> megan, you could -- people that know guns, can you change magazine clips in a second. there's no evidence that -- that, you know, that anything would have changed.
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>> what do you say to that? >> i say there's a lot of evidence thing koss have changed. this young man emptied 154 shells. 154 bullets, in five minutes. if he had to change magazines more often no doubt it would have created breaks, and people could have made a difference and stopped maybe some of the killing. the families feel clear about that, and i certainly feel clear about it. if you can change them so quickly, why do you need more than ten jn i would turn that argument around's in connecticut, we could listen to both sides and be respectful. respect people's rights to hunt and self-protection, bust also pass strong laws that address these mass killings. >> president obama will be in hartford tomorrow. what do you want to hear from him? >> i want to hear they're going to keep at this at the federal level. just because they've had hurdles, that they're going to persist, and i think that's what he's going to hear from the families.
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i hope that they'll look at connecticut sand say, we can get there, even though it's not easy, because you're trying to balance different sides of this, but common sense needs to prevail in washington. they need to get along and make changes to make this country safer for everyone. >> connecticut state senator. thank you. thank you so much. >> thank you. coming up, continuing tensions on the korean peninsula. live to jim messina in seoul for the latest. still ahead, in case you haven't heard, "mad men" back tonight. season six premieres tonight. the martinis are ready. seriously? we're going to do pregaming here on the show. also a tv critic who says don draper and the gang have forever changed television. you're watching msnbc. stick around. everyone's retirement dream is different;
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>> ah that, of course, is the fake north korean leader kim jong un on "saturday night live." the fake leader actually met with the real dennis rodman, likely the last american to hang out with the boy dictator. you remember back in february, rodman visited kim jong-un with the harlem globetrotters. watching an xexpedition game during that visit. and the halls of the capitol complex. don't do this. stephen colbert tried it friday, and it was captured on the spectacle. didn't make it very far. on capitol hill taping a story with democratic pennsylvania congressman matt cartwright, and this is our favorite video of the week. the kid president. robby novak, who's become a youtube sensation with those weekly web ep sides. he visited the real president in
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the oval office this week, and like any other kid, he picked up the phone. take a listen. >> hello? >> is anybody on there? >> nope. >> okay. well, quite sure not to cause an international incident. >> the president even showed the youngster a telegraph machine, which, of course, he had never seen. neither have i, actually. there's a political action committee, would you believe, to promote candidates with beards? yes, it is true. the founder of beard pac says, "with the resurgence of beards in popular culture in today's younger generation we believe the time is now to bring facial hair back into politics." their ultimate wish, support a bearded candidate for president. could north korea test a missile this week? back to the news and a report from the korean peninsula, next. also, american space cowboys. nasa's latest plan to lasso an
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asteroid, to bring it closer to earth. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics and space. [ male announcer ] it's red lobster's lobsterfest our largest selection of lobster entrees, like lobster lover's dream or new grilled lobster and lobster tacos. come in now and sea food differently. now, buy one lobsterfest entree and get one 1/2 off with a coupon at her long day of pick ups and drop offs
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how old is the oldest person you've known? we gave people a sticker and had them show us. we learned a lot of us have known someone who's lived well into their 90s. and that's a great thing. but even though we're living longer, one thing that hasn't changed: the official retirement age.
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♪ the question is how do you make sure you have the money you need to enjoy all of these years. ♪ nasa has new plans to xplorp the great unknown, and this time they include grabbing an asteroid. right. senior scientists want to use a robotic probe to catch a 500 ton space rock and pull it closer to earth, part of a new initiative to study asteroids. it will last more than a decade and cost at least $100 million a year. i'm craig melvin. good sunday. a quick look at other story rts making news. violent clashes in cairo today. at least one person died and dozens injured outside the city's main coptic christian cathedral. mobs attacked with kripgss killed by muslims.
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pastor rick warren are awe noi mourning, their youngest son committed suicide. the author of "purpose driven life," kay and i are overwhelmed by your love, prayers and kind words. and leading a appropriate in salt lake city. thousands watched the speech. . ing saw it satellite. one of three members on a key church board. tensions remain high ahead of secretary of state john kerry's trip to south korea. the united states has to lead a missile test and south korea is expecting a possible missile attack from north korea in the coming days. nbc's jim maceda is in the south korean capital city of seoul with the latest. jim? >> reporter: hi, craig. well, when we spoke at this time yesterday, it seemed that all sides were stepping back from
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the brink. well, today certainly the u.s. and south koreans continue to dial back the tension. the pentagon even cancelled a test launch of a minutemen ballistic missiles in california worryrd that the launch might be misread by north korean, and the top south korean military commander followed suit postponing his meetings in washington today for the same reason. this coming friday, secretary of state john kerry is visiting seoul, and will likely look for new ideas. even perhaps, we understand, teaming up with china, who is sounding increasingly frustrated with its north korean ally. perhaps to launch a new diplomatic offensive on kim jong-un. while there was no threat from kim today, some extremely ferocious propaganda video appeared on the north korean state tv. you've got to check this out. showing trained german shepherds worked into a frenzy, then attacking the effigy of the
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south korean defense minister, of all people. meanwhile, there seems to be little doubt now, craig, that the two medium-ranged north korean missiles we were talking about yesterday believed to be mounted on their launchers will be fired in the days ahead. perhaps as early as wednesday april 10. the day when north korean officials had warned that they could no longer guarantee the safety of foreign embassies in pa yo pa yong yon. and the founder of the north korean nation. plenty of symbolism there. this kind of missile, by the way, has never been tested by the north koreans. that's probably one reason why south koreans here are not too concerned. they've seen missile test, from the north before, just as they say they've lives through waves of war-like rhetoric before as well, only to see north korea back off once it got its
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concession. the food aid, the attention. whatever it is that it wanted. the question, will this time be different? craig? >> jim maceda, our man on the ground on this sunday. jim, thank you. back to domestic politics. congress could soon be moving forward on immigration, but many in the country want action now. supporters of immigration reform took to the streets in cities across the country this week in carrying signs that read "the time is now." let's take the issue to our political war room. chris, democratic strategist and former chief of staff from west virginia senator, matt, deputy assistant to george w. bush. gop good to see you both. senator lindsey graham on "meet the press" said immigration reform will come. take a listen. >> every corner the republican party from libertarians, the rnc, house republicans and the rank and file republican party member is now understanding there has to be an earned pathway to citizenship. >> graham went on to say, chris,
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that an immigration deal would give the gop leverage to use against the democrats. what do you make of that? >> well -- i'm not sure it's going to give them much leverage as democrats, considering if it wasn't for their resounding defeat in november, they wouldn't even be talking about immigration. so, i mean, listen, at the end of the day, it's good to pass immigration reform. it's good for the country. bring millions out of the shadows. good rether you're a democrat or republican. in terms of political benefits, the republicans are being somewhat naive or generous, however you want to describe it, if they actually believe that people are going to reward them for finally coming to terms with something that should have happened years ago. >> if not reward, won't they stop punishing them? >> possibly. depends, for example -- one, let's wait to see what the final deal is. as much as senator graham and others are talking about immigration reform, there's still a faction of the republican party, once they see the language and the details is
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going to erupt, because to them anything that is is a pathway to citizenship is amnesty. that's going to create another set of divisions. they have to figure out amongst themselves what are they willing to accept before they start talking about the political benefits from it. >> matt, there are more reports of movement from the right, politico today reporting high-profile conservative groups are taking on an unexpected cause, passing immigration reform. surprising, a new element to the immigration debate, one that could influence republican lawmakers reluctant to is a are the positive the cause. is there really a change from the right, matt? >> yeah. i really do think there is. i think chris is right. there's a demographic challenge in front of the republican party. also, basic economic questions to ask ourselves. i know the economy has been rough. we came out of a pretty rough recession. ship cop say was a bipartisan recession and now are looking at sporadic growth and have had to look at the economic needs long
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term. an ostrich with its head in the sand to say we don't need these workers. do we have to do it while securing borders? sure. make sure that people have a pathway to earn legal status? absolutely. we've got to figary way to dom what it takes to get our economy, the workers it needs. my party has a challenge in front of it and i like the fact there are more and more voices saying we ought to pass a bill. >> chris, senator graham, once again, play more sound from him. he sees this immigration deal as a pray ruelude to solving the b crisis as well. >> if you do immigration and the grand bargain this year will dominate the 21st century, yes. the key to the grand bargain can we solve immigration. >> how could that pave the way for a deal on entitlements and taxes? chris? >> i don't know. i'm not sure what his logic is, because, they're a little different, for obvious reasons.
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you can make the argument, if they can figure out a deal on immigration, it creates more bipartisan flavor, that make as grand bargain possible, but the grand bargain has real ideological differences and policy differences between the parties in terms of revenue, in terms of the tax structure. so there's not been a -- there was a come to jesus moment, if will you, for the republicans in the november elections on immigration. that is not happening on budget issues and revenue. i don't see them budging on that, really. >> let's pivot to the other big issue this week. the president, of course, will be unveiling that budget proposal on wednesday. probably, we're told. and in it the president reportedly will call for some entitlement cuts including social security and medicare. how is the plan going to sit with senate democrat whose have a budget of their other than and it does not make cuts to those programs? >> i think the white house is going have a tough sell on both sides. i can tell you when i was up there in terms of just dealing with my senator, senator manchin
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was open to possibly reforming social security and other issues. when aarp and others came in, it was a very tough negotiation, and i can only imagine the left members of my party who will be more vocal in terms of opposition. the president will have a tough deal. he's right to compromise, that's the name of the game, but it's tough to do when you're talking about such a big deal involving so many components. >> matt, according to "usa today," the gop wants to save money in social security and medicare programs without raising anymore taxes. obama's open to search entitlement changes as revenue as part of a deal. what's going to happen to the president's budget, matt? >> you know, bottom line is, i think, craig, people use this term dead on arrival, i don't know what it means anymore. the fact patty murray passed a democratic budget in the senate. president obama has his budget coming out and republicans have their budget. face it.
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nobody's getting their way. to get to a ten-year glide path towards the balanced budget, they have to sit around a table and hammer it out. lindsey sgram saying, maybe i don't agree immigration is the key, but if we can build up trust, that both sides understand both have to have a role in coming to a solution on an authority question like immigration. the same dynamics happening on the budget, and we ought to take the term grand bargain, throw it away. it scares everybody. get a budget deal. figure out a way to balance the budget and do something to save the programs, like associate security and medicare. talk about cuts all you want. the fact is they're going bankrupt unless we do something to change it. >> the president is offering to do what no democratic plareside has done. cutting social security and medicare. if he's offering to do those things, why, then, won't a larger members on the right agree, maybe more revenues, maybe that's what it's going to take to get this deal done? >> craig, think back to the
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whole grand bargain. i'll use the term again, unfortunately, between john boehner and barack obama. the deal, income tax rates would have to go up, but in association with that, there would be some, some thought to the how we pay for medicare and social security over the long term. those two policy disputes got put on separate paths. we all know that the income tax rates expired, and some went up. now we're taking social security and medicare separate from that. still, put them all together, it's the same conversation. republicans are, in essence, allowing for more revenue. as specially as the economy gets rolling. if we do tax reform, you'll see loopholes close getting to what a lot of democrats are talking about. >> we'll leave it there. thank you. >> thank you. still ahead, incomes's claudia has the latest on the pope's new bold agenda. he's usually in italy. today, claudio is here in the flesh. first urp, a mission to mars with the bird's-eye view.
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until you know how toviaz affects you. the most common side effects are dry mouth and constipation. talk to your doctor about toviaz. the most common side effects athere's a reason no one saysn. "easy like monday morning." sundays are the warrior's day to unplug and recharge. what if this feeling could last all week? with centurylink as your trusted partner, it can. our visionary cloud infrastructure and global broadband network free you to focus on what matters. with custom communications solutions and dedicated support, your business can shine all week long.
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this morning on launch pad 17a at cape canaveral, the familiar sounds of a mission to space. >> t minus 40 seconds. everything look goods for launch. >> liftoff of this important flight revealed something new. a camera mounted near the top of the delta rocket shows first a bethtaking glimpse of the florida coast slipping away. then the rapid ascent of the spacecraft. >> we are now supersonic. >> and the rocket boosters jettison. within three minutes, at the ends of the stratosphere. speed, 7,200 miles per hour. >> the mars odyssey launch on this day in 2001. the odyssey arrived starting orbit around mars in october of
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that year. today it still circumstance manies the red planet, and sends images back to earth. we've grown used to them that it's easy to forget sometimes how awesome the images still are. let's flashback to this day in 2003 when the united states reached a critical point in the iraq war. >> u.s. troops are now moving into and out of many sections of baghdad almost at will, tightenitighten ing the noose on the iraqi ra seim. u.s. marines today stormed across the tigris in baghdad fighting every inch of the way against iraqi republican guards. the army's 3rd infantry paid a surprise house call on saddam hussein's prooized palace deep inside baghdad, invading saddam's most personal space. even the bathroom, complete with gold plumbing. u.s. troops found no iraqi leaders and little intelligence here but u.s. officials say it sent a strong message to the iraqi leadership.
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>> this regime will come to an end. the outcome is clear. the saddam hussein regime a over. >> this day in 2003 when u.s. troops made strides to capture baghdad. two days later troops tore down that infamous statue signifying the fall of the capital city. it would take another eight months to capture the leader himself hiding in a spider hole covered in dirt. troops found him on the outskirts of his hometown. eight more years until the war ended. december 21, 2011, which the last american combat soldier left iraq. next, have you heard about the "mad men" romney connection? stick around. we'll tell you all about it. do we have a mower? no. a trimmer? no. we got nothing. we just bought our first house, we're on a budget. we're not ready for spring. well let's get you ready. very nice. you see these various colors. we got workshops every saturday.
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>> here's a surprise! >> when this job is good, it satisfies every need. >> here. >> those were, of course, scenes from the hit show, the hit amc show, "mad men," the '60s drama returns tonight. returns tonight with a two-hour season premiere. the show, of course, has a lot of fans, 2.7 million people watched last season's finale. so why is "mad men" so popular? what does it have to say about politics as well? tv critic allen seppenwall is here, she's the author of "the revolution was televised." thanks for being here and bringing the martinis. >> you've got to have martinis for "mad men". >> you write in your book, among other things, the revolution was
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televised. what kind of revolution are we talking about here? >> we're at a point, "mad men" is a show, i just, literally, as i was in the limo coming over here, i was putting the finishing touches on my review of tonight's episode. it's about 4,000 words. it's longer than most of the dissertations i wrote in college about literature. this is the show that is the equivalent of deep literature. there are so many deep themes. you can really dig into it and feel like you're watching something very smart and very thoughtful and really beautiful as well. and people really seem to enjoy that. >> the writing's great, the acting's great, it's well cast. let's talk, of course, now, about the main character, for folks who don't watch this show, his name is don draper. and some of the other shows you talk about in your book, "the wire," you talk about "friday night lights," and you said "the sopranos" is the one that made the world realize something special was happening on
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television. it rewrote the rules and made tv a better, happier place for thinking viewers, even as it was telling the story of a bunch of stubbo stubborn, ignorant human beings. you could have been talking about don draper there. >> yeah, he sleeps around and is always looking for happiness and never quite finding it. he's actually just much more polished and looks good in a suit. >> james gandolfini is the same guy as don draper. that makes a lot of sense. i want to talk to you about this controversy from last season. one specific moment from last season that sparked a bit of a political controversy pinpoint to play it for our viewers at home and we'll talk about it on the other side. take a look. take a listen. >> henry francis. well, tell jim his honor's not going to michigan. because romney's a clown and i don't want him standing next to him. >> they caught some flak for that. that, of course, was harry francis, the character on the show. not talking about mitt romney,
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but was talking about his father, george, right? >> yes. george romney, who was running for president at the time and was the governor of michigan. the show dabbles in real-life contemporary politics very little, just because it's set 50 years ago, but every now and then, if they can make a connection between now and then, they do. i actually think it's more of a conservative show than anything else. i mean, it's sort of longing for days of rockefeller republicans, but there's definitely a sense of the show wishes things were more now like they were then. >> mitt romney's son, tag, george's grandson, he was pretty upset about that exchange. in fact, he tweeted, "serious? lib media mocking my dead grandpa? well, tell them not going to michigan because romney's a clown --" he's referencing the show there. was tag overreacting? >> he's his grandfather, i get it. you're sensitive, you're hearing your grandfather referred to as a clown. i can see him being upset about that. but i think for the most part, even though it's part of the
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"liberal media," "mad men" is a show that's slightly to the right of center. >> how so? >> because, i mean, it really, it looks -- it takes the view of the '60s, which we're used to seeing, from the point of view of the hippies and the rebels and are changing things and it takes the view of the straights, who are looking at these people like, really? this is what the world is coming to? you know, couldn't we all be a little bit more like don draper and dress nicely and speak nicely and not rebel quite so much against authority? >> well, for folk who is fall this show closely, this season compared to seasons past, what's going to be the difference? >> i can't say too much about the new season, otherwise thing matt weiner would take out a hit against me. but we're getting closer to the end of the '60s, the social changes are getting much more prominent as we get closer and closer. hair is getting longer, don draper is looking more like a relic than we've ever seen before, and i think that's something that the show will have to deal with. >> what about the role of women on the show? that's been one of the chief
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criticisms, and one of the weapon on my show said she doesn't like it, because she doesn't like the way women are portrayed. >> that's interesting, because i think the way women are portr portrayed is the best thing the show does. the character that becomes the heart of the show is peggy olsen, who starts out as a secretary, doesn't know anything, is taken advantage of by all the men, and by now she has risen, she is practically don's equal. she's taken a job at a rival agency and she's doing really well for herself. i think the show has done a good job of portraying how women's roles evolve throughout the '60s. >> which don draper will we get in season 6? >> again, my daughter is here, i need to be here for her, so i'm worried about what matt weiner might do. >> well, don't give it away -- >> i think that don draper is past his prime. i think don draper's prime was maybe season 2, season 3, and we've seen a lot of him struggling since then to stay relevant, and the older he gets,
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the more that's going to be a problem. >> that is significafascinating. it sounds like you're saying that don draper might not be the main character in season 6. >> i didn't say that. >> you didn't, i surmised that. thank you so much, and thank you even more for the martinis. coming up, wall street tycoon darla moore tells me what it was like to become the first of two women to enter the all-male augusta national golf club. the other woman, of course, none other than former secretary of state, condi rice. darla moore is also a rare dog breeder, as well. first, though, north korea on the brink. how the white house is responding to the latest developments inside the hermit kingdom. this is msnbc, the place for politics. it's sunday afternoon, pregaming as well. >> cheers. [ designer ] enough of just covering up my moderate to severe plaque psoriasis. i decided enough is enough. ♪ [ spa lady ] i started enbrel. it's clinically proven to provide clearer skin. [ rv guy ] enbrel may not work for everyone -- and may not clear you completely, but for many, it gets skin clearer fast, within 2 months,
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big volume mascara with a brush designed to crush. 200% more volume. zero clumps. new clump crusher. from easy, breezy, beautiful, covergirl. good sunday afternoon. i'm craig melvin. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics. rick rewind? the lone star gov says he's interested in a 2014 run now.
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kay bailey hutchison will join me to talk about perry's prospects and her recent trip to the korean peninsula, as well. plus, pope francis has vowed to crack down on the church's sex abuse crisis. nbc's claudio lavanga is our man in rome. he's live on set with me a little bit later. and this year marks five years of wedded bliss for jay-z and beyonce. where they went to celebrate and why it's causing so much outrage in washington. first, our political headlines on this sunday. the president will head to connecticut tomorrow to push for stricter gun control laws. numerous republicans, including texas senator ted cruz have already threatened to block gun legislation if and when it comes to the floor. appearing with republican senator, john mccain, on cbs, chuck schumer today expressed some strong feelings about this. watch. >> there were a handful of senators led by senator cruz who said they wanted to filibuster and not even allow us to debate this bill. that would be very wrong. these are big issues, for deeply
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felt convictions on both sides. john and i clearly would not agree, but we certainly should at least be allowed to get on the floor and have debate. >> secretary of state john kerry landed in te landed landed in tel aviv this morning. he has already met with mahmoud abbas after meeting with turkish leaders on the first leg of his trip earlier today. secretary kerry talked about the state department staffer killed in afghanistan yesterday. kerry met her just a few weeks ago and described her as vivacious, smart, and capable. north korea continues to provoke its southern neighbor. south korea says it is now expecting a missile launch by wednesday. former ambassador to china and presidential candidate, jon huntsman, talked about u.s. preparedness this morning. listen. >> we've deployed a couple of aegis class destroyers with missile defense capabilities in the region, we've got ongoing military-to-military exercises with south korea. we've scrambled some long-range bombers, b-2s and b-52s.
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so militarily, we are at a level of preparedness with south korea that is very, very good. of course, north korea hates that. >> so, it seems like the united states is prepared militarily for conflict with north korea, but could we soon be talking about war? nbc's white house correspondent, peter alexander, joins me live now on this sunday. pete, how is the white house at this point trying to diffuse tensions? >> reporter: it's a good question, craig. clearly, the white house does not desire war and certainly you would presume that north korea doesn't want that either, despite the posturing we've witnessed in recent days. you're hearing that south korea is now worried that they think there could be a missile test or a missile being launched within the next several days. the u.s. saying something pretty similar. white house senior adviser dan pfeiffer saying that he believes, wouldn't be surprised if north korea had some form of a missile test within the near future as well. the administration has really been leaning on china. north korea's strongest ally for
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any assistance in this situation right now. the president first spoke to the new president of china, president xi, just last month, where they've been saying among other things that you either crack down on pyongyang or prepare for a larger american presence in that region, where there are already two u.s. destroyers in place right now. but the ability to converse has been challenged as well. we know senator john kerry is en route to the region already, in israel right now. he will head off to seoul and beijing late this week. also, we have heard from the south korean joint chiefs that their top military leader will not be coming here to the u.s., where he was supposed to meet with his u.s. counterpart, martin dempsey, our joint chief's chairman, later next week, as a result of the tensions taking place there. he thinkst it's most important that he stays in his home country of south korea. >> peter alexander for us, from 1600 pennsylvania avenue. pete, thanks. >> with more now, we're joined
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by former texas senator, kay bailey hutchison, who just returned from south korea thursday, again, as tensions continue to grow there. senator, always good to see you. first of all, let's start with this trip. i know you were in seoul, south korea, for an economic forum, but i also understand your time there overlapped with north korea declaration of a state of war on the south. you met with commanders, and i think i got this right. you could actually see north korean soldiers from one vantage point that you had. what was that like and what were your briefings like with officials there? >> well, yes, i was on the dmc, the demilitaryized zone, and we were maybe 25 yards from the north korean soldiers, who were taking pictures of us. so, but it was sort of business as usual. there was not a high tension level among our commanders, nor the north koreans. it was the usual kind of, they're looking at everything
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that's happening. and i found that the south koreans, mostly, were feeling that way, in the ones i talked to. and i also think, craig, that the real game changer here is the new regime in china, as well as the new regime in south korea. president park and president xi. and i think that now is the time to actually reopen the armistice and start working in a way with north korea as well as china and south korea and the united states to go toward a real peace treaty, where north korea would be bound or face even more harsh consequences. >> senator, you mentioned china there and the regime change. how do we think that that regime change could effect the outcome of what we're going to see on the korean peninsula? >> i think it's a huge change. because, for really one of the few times that we have seen
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china let a u.n. resolution go through, that sanctions north korea for what they have been doing, these missile testings, in the last few weeks, china let that go through. i think that's a very good sign that china is tiring of this rhetoric and the sort of craziness that is coming out of north korea. and i think china has more at stake now, for north korea to begin to act more responsibly and i'm very, i'm very hopeful that president xi will impart that to kim jong-un. >> how would you characterize the mood of the south korean people that you talked to on the ground during your visit? >> i think they are not alarmed, because they have seen this before, but they are always wary, because of the sort of unpredictability that they have seen in north korea.
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but one thing that i think, craig, that really should be on the table, that i haven't heard anyone saying today on the talk sh shows, and that is, we don't have a real treaty with north korea and south korea. it is just a cease-fire. it's an armistice. so there's really not a consequence of a violation of the cease-fire. i think it's time for china and north korea, the united states and south korea and the u.n. to sit down and say, we need a peace treaty, where there are agreements and consequences and try to bring it more toward a real treaty, as opposed to just a cease-fire. >> senator, but how do you engage in direct talks with the regime that has, in the past, at least, really, in addition to thumbing their nose at the international community and the united states, specifically, they do one thing, or they say one thing and they do another thing. this is something that's gone on for decades. what makes you think it would be
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any different this time? >> i think, first of all, china is different. i think -- >> okay. >> i think the chinese are much more robust now in their economy. they have an enlightened new leader that i think is trying to show that he is different. and i think that that is going to have a great bearing on north korea. i also think that negotiating a treaty that would begin to lay out parameters so that north korea could begin to have a standard, i think has a real potential. and i think that it's something that china would be the best one to put forward and the u.n., of course, under ban ki-moon, would also be a key participant there and a signatory. >> let's turn to domestic politics really quickly here. let's talk about your home state there. rick perry, governor perry, recently said he is not going to
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rule out running for president again in 2016. that he is, indeed, his word, "indeed exploring it." what kind of support would he have there in texas? >> well, i think that you would have to poll texas to see. but i really think that we are looking now at a number of very qualified people that are going to be lacking for the president, see, but more important than that, i think the party is facing a real turning point. and i think you're going to see new ideas and a new approach from the republican party, because after eight years of the obama administration, i think people are beginning to be concerned about the overregulation, the growth of government, the way our country is going, which is not the celebration of entrepreneurship and private property ownership and private business ingenuity that we have seen that built in country. so i think we're going to see a
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lot of new approaches and i think it's time for us to do that. >> senator kay bailey hutchison, senator, thank you. always good to see you. welcome home. >> thank you, craig. next, pope francis has vowed to tackle the sexual abuse crisis. we'll get the very latest. also, talk about an odd couple. what is brad pitt doing with eric cantor? we'll tell you why the two had a little get-together friday night. hey! did you know that honey nut cheerios has oats that can help lower cholesterol? and it tastes good? sure does! ♪ wow. [ buzz ] delicious, right? yeah. it's the honey, it makes it taste so... ♪ well, would you look at the time... what's the rush? bee happy. bee healthy. with clusters of flakes and o's. oh, ho ho... it's the honey sweetness. i...i mean,
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pope francis earlier today addressing thousands in st. peter's square at the vatican. and the pope told the crowd, don't be afraid to be and to live as christians. the pope these days is showing he's not afraid, at least, to deal with a pretty controversial
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issue. he's ordered thecisively to pro from sexual abuse and punish predator priests. pope francis last month became the head of a church that has been rocked by sex abuse scandals for more than a decade. claudio lavanga covers the vatican for nbc. we're fortunate he is here in new york city with us today. always good to see you in the flesh. thanks for coming in. the vatican announcement was welcomed, but it contains very few details about precisely how the church is going to go about doing this. what do you think that the church can do that it hasn't already done? >> well, first of all, pope francis hasn't said anything new. because those who support those who already fell victim of sexual abuse in the past is just a continuation, as he said, of the policy that benedict xvi before him started. so this -- that's why the reaction from survivors' groups was cold. they said, that's all very well, but we want to see, as you said, action, because action speaks
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louder than words. so what can they do? actually, they've done a lot to improve in the last few years. benedict xvi even started apologizing for the problem, something that wasn't done before. started meetings for survivors, even here in the united states in 2008, on the 17th of april for some of those victims that we all know about. what can they do? well, the survivors say, well, we shouldn't name name, and the vatican saying, well, we can't really do that, because sometimes, of course, some priests might fall victim of revenge, revenge by people that might name them and they are not guilty. so we can't really do that. but certainly the survivor networks want to see more action, more than what's been done until now. which pretty much means, you need to get -- you need to fire people. you need to excommunicate people that have been found guilty, or guilty of protecting those who are guilty. of course, one of those names was cardinal bernal low of boston, who was accused of covering up a lot of abusers in
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the archdiocese of boston. and he hasn't been either fired or -- >> and what does the vatican say to those who have called for that? for that to be something new that they do? >> well, they're saying, we are doing a lot. and we are improving all the time. benedict xvi started when he took over the office, was the doctrine of the congregation of the doctrine of the faith, which was the office when he was a cardinal of dealing that was meant to deal with all these cases. well, he improved the policies, he introduced zero tolerance policy. he asked all the archbishops and bishops is to send letters to him and communicate to him every case of abuse that was out there. and he tackled many of them. what the abuse -- what these survivors are asking are, while you need to expand the one strike and you're out policy that the americans, for instance, introduced, like cardinal o'malley of boston, who cleaned up that mess that was left down there. so maybe pope francis will be able to do.
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he's appointed cardinal o'malley to the vatican to deal with these cases worldwide and not just in the states. >> in a report on the crisis says in part, "a decade ago, the u.s. conference of catholic bishops is commissioned a survey of every diocese in the country that collected data about the extent of the sex abuse problem. even though victims' groups claimed there was underreporting, more than 4,000 priests were accused of molesting children." ten years later, how much credibility does the vatican even have on the issue? >> well, as i said, a lot more than it used to have. >> okay. >> there was -- there used to be a culture, craig, of dealing with the problem by taking the priest that was accused of abuse and move him to another parish or even send him away, for instance. of course, neither worked. among all the abuse victims that i spoke to in my many years of dealing with the story, one of them said, well, as a matter of fact, i'm not angry with the
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priest that abused me, because he's a sick man. what i'm angry about is that he did that before in another church, in another parish before me, and he was sent to my church to do the same to me. so i blame the constitutiinstit which is, of course, the vatican. well, a lot of things have changed since then. the culture is now zero tolerance. so now we are moving on through a culture of denial to action. so let's see what pope francis will bring to the table next. >> claudio lavanga, our man at the vatican, today our man in new york city. good to see you, my friend. thanks so much for coming up. >> thank you very much. still ahead, beyonce and jay-z causing quite the stir on their vacation. find out where they went and why everybody's up in arms about it. there's a reason no one says "easy like monday morning." sundays are the warrior's day to unplug and recharge. what if this feeling could last all week?
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peers, but this week, outside the lines practice video shows exactly how far she has gone. cursing at them. >> get the [ bleep ] off. >> shooting t-shirt guns. >> and you thought rutgers coach mike rice is bad, right? that's comedienne melissa mccarthy as an abusive women's basketball coach on "saturday night live" last night. you should get online and check out the full clip. pretty hilarious. into the playground we go. hip-hop's raining couple, beyonce and jay-z, celebrated their fifth wedding anniversary this past week in cuba, no less. and that has ruffled some major political feathers. two republican congressmen from florida are now asking a federal agency to investigate that trip, questioning whether it violated travel restrictions to the communist nation. and mr. pitt goes to washington. brad pitt spent an evening with none other than house majority leader, eric cantor, friday night. the congressman tweeted out this
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fuzzy picture of himself and his wife with pitt, writing, "at horacio alger association, dinner with my wife, diana, and brad pitt, celebrating the pursuit of the american dream." and something that has been limited to slumber parties was on full display on the national mall in d.c. yesterday. check this out. a huge pillow fight. hundreds gathered to take part in that mass pillow fight. kids, adults, they were arranged in many cities around the world as part of the urban playground movement, which promotes free public noncommercial events. looks like some folks showed up without their pillows. kind of seems to defeat the purpose. puppies and trail blazers. i made a special trip to south carolina to meet one of the only two women members of augusta national. my story on darla moore, next. hey, guys. chuck todd here. i just want to remind you to
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send in your good morning videos. don't you want to be on television? it's quick, it's easy, and you could be the next winner who gets to introduce the show. kind of like the andy warhol, rule, right? everybody gets their 15 minutes. everybody should do their introductory video to the daily rundown. and it's easy. you just need one of these suckers. you shoot an iphone video, we like mascots, we like venues, you know, just keep it pg-13, that's all we ask. shoot it and then e-mail it,, or tweet it with the #tdrgoodmorning. do it, tweet it in, you too could become sort of famous. go t how much our advice and guidance costs. spoiler alert: it's low. it's guidance on your terms, not ours. e-trade. less for us. more for you.
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it will cost at least $100 million a year. i'm craig melvin. good sunday to you. here's a quick look at some of the other top stories making news right now. fashion designer lilly pulitzer has died. hu it was those bright, tropic print dresses that made her famous. she started selling them in the early 1960s and they have been popular ever since. lilly pulitzer was 81. nelson mandela is getting intensive care at home today. south africa's former president spent ten days in the hospital being treated for pneumonia. the 94-year-old mandela spent 27 years in prison during apartheid. and then there were two. the michigan wolverines will face off against the louisville cardinals tomorrow night in the ncaa championship games. the teams, they play in different conferences, so it will be the first time they have played each other in 25 years. well, this week golf fans
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will gather at augusta national golf club for the 77th masters tournament. the all-male exclusivity came to an end when the club admitted two women last year. one of them is darla moore, once dubbed the toughest babe in business by "fortune" magazine. i spent some time with moore recently at her home in south carolina. besides talking golf and politics, i was especially interested in her thoughts about why she will not be working to get more women into augusta national. darla moore is a lot of things. >> come on, babies. here we go. >> reporter: weird dog breeder and preservationist. >> that's one of the original tobacco barns where you used to bring the tobacco in from the fields. >> reporter: conservationist and horticulturist. >> we've got about 5,000 different species out here. >> reporter: she employs a full-time staff to maintain a botanical garden that sits on her sprawling property in lake city, south carolina. >> it's now about a 30-acre formal garden, that i do open to
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the public by appointment. >> reporter: from the 300 acre farm, she admitted there's one thing she's not proud of. >> my golf game needs work. >> reporter: surprising since along with former secretary of state, condoleezza rice, the 58-year-old moore is now one of two female players at golf's sacred place. >> it was, you know, a lifetime honor. it was humbling, exciting. it was very a big deal in one's life. >> reporter: making history at augusta national is the latest chapter in a barrier-breaking life story. she became a superstar in business and banking by helping companies teetering on the brink of bankruptcy. by 1998, she was running her husband's private kt company, rainwater, and was "fortune" magazine's 19th moat powerful woman in america. >> doesn't matter where you come from or what dirt road you came from, you can compete, you can
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compete nationally. >> reporter: if she spent the '80s and '90s making more than a billion dollars, she's spent the better part of the last decade giving much of it away, nearly $100 million since 1998, and mostly to her alma mater. but not without controversy or occasional regret. >> i remember calling marichard my husband, and saying, richard, i think we may just have piesse $25 million down a rat hole. moore worried her initial investment was being squandered and took a more hands-on approach and decided to gave $45 million more. the business school now bears her name and she was on the board of trustees, until south carolina governor nikki haley booted her. >> you don't want a benefactor to give $75 million to a school to sit on this 19-member board, because suddenly the 19-member board becomes a board of one. >> i had one vote.
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i had one vote. >> but you can be pretty persuasive. >> but that's because i'm per sw swasive, because i make logical, intelligent, rational arguments. not because i have the resources. the logic of that argument doesn't move me very much. >> reporter: neither does politics. you name it, there's a good chance she's been approached to run for it. >> my purpose in life is to be a change agent, to affect change for the positive. if that's what you want to do, i can do more of that from the outside than i could from the inside. >> reporter: to do that, she's growing her palmetto institute, an effort aimed at lifting south carolinian s from president of the, in part, by connecting them to resources already available. expect more work for the poor and more philanthropy. darla moore plans to give away all of her money during her lifetime, but do not expect her to make waves for women at her new golf club. are you now going to push for more female members? >> i wouldn't think that would be something i would do.
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>> that surprises me, coming from you. >> well, i'm very happy to, and very honored, to be one of the first members. that wouldn't be my role there. i'm a member. i'm not an advocate. i'm a member. >> so, should a trailblazer be an advocate? the brain trust is here. moody moez is at the center for american progress. she has been held up by new york city traffic. when she gets here, we will, of course, slide her in. david nakamura is standing by. he covers the white house for "the washington post." robert costa is the washington editor at the "national review." gentleman, we'll have the conversation, but once ayeesha gets in here, we'll have to shut you up. we don't want three guys talking about the role of women. but i do want to start, let me start with you, robert. this is an interesting question for a number of reasons. this idea that because you do something, because you achieve something, you all of a sudden should become an advocate for
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others. what do you make of that argument? >> i think her answer to you in the interview was interesting. she considers herself a member, but she is an advocate in her own way. she leads by example through her leadership activities and just her presence at augusta national, hopefully, will be a change agent, as she says, in her own way. >> david, what do you think? if you break a barrier, if you break a mold of some sort, whether you're the first black guy to do something or the first asian american to do something or the first woman to do something, do you then have an obligation to pull the folks, pull the folks behind you? to pull them through the door? >> craig, i think it's a good question, but i do think you have an obligation to do so. of course, you're leading by example, just being there, but i think speaking to the issue and maybe doing a little bit more to bring those others and help open the door even wider is important. it's interesting to me that she's being hailed as one of the first women at augusta, where, of course, tiger woods was under pressure as one of the first, you know, really strong african-american players and one of the best in the world, to say
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something about this whole issue a few years back. and remember ten years ago, when hoody johnson, didn't want to allow women. martha burke, a female activist challenged him on this, tiger woods was under a lot of pressure. but michael jordan has been criticized not stepping forward as much. but i think it's interesting and this will continue to be an issue for her and for other women who are going to be at augusta. >> and i don't think it's probably reasonable, robert cos costa, to expect a slew of other female members to get into augusta national anytime soon, either, i would imagine? >> i'm not so sure about that, uv secretary of state rice, miss moore, hopefully there will be more in the future. but i think the problem here when you come to the question of whether she should be an advocate, they consider this to be a golf club and them to be members of this golf club and they don't see it as a political entity, where they're trying to look at it through a political prism. that's the important line here. they see it as a golf club, but others understandably see it as
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something they should be pushing harder for. >> let's pivot here. we don't like to have too many conversations about women without talking about hillary clinton, you know, here on the network. hillary clinton, last week, at the women in the world summit, where she repeatedly said women are agents for change. how can hillary clinton straddle both, being a trailblazer and an advocate, especially if she runs for president? >> i think hillary clinton's been doing it her entire career, but she now has a lot of political questions ahead of her. i think she's probably the front-runner for the democratic nomination. but the question is, is the democratic party all ready to line up behind hillary clinton? is she doing the work with the grassroots? the party's changed since she's run for president before. so she needs to do a lot to build those relationships back up again. >> david frum notes that hillary clinton in 2016 would be a mistake for the democrats. she writes on that the democrats will need to offer innovation in 2016. if hillary clinton glades into the nomination in '16 on the
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strength of money, name recognition, and a generalized feeling of "it's her term," then democrats will forego this necessary renewal. what can hillary clinton do to sound fresh in her pitch to the american people? >> well, she's already trying to catch up. as the secretary of state, she couldn't be as overtly political, didn't have time, but also that position didn't offer that. she's now come out, as you know, recently, strongly, in favor of gay marriage, something she had not done before, so she's trying to catch up politically to where the democratic party had moved. to stay fresh, i don't think she'd have trouble galvanizing the democratic base, especially as the first woman to personally, you know, be elected. i think that's still going to be a powerful motivating force. the clinton brand, you know, talk about jeb bush running. there's a lot of interesting factors here. and as far as policies, she's going to have a lot of work to defend in terms of some of the things the republicans are going to go after with her work as secretary of state. but i think that she's going to be someone who, i think, everyone is going to say, hey,
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she's going to probably be the likely nominee if she goes forward, but, of course, we thought that four or five years ago and it didn't happen. >> stick around. lots more with the brain trust, including president obama's trip to connecticut tomorrow and john kerry's whirlwind diplomacy tour and what it might mean for his better half. you're watching msnbc, the place for politics.
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moody mills, but david nakamura is here and robert costa is here as well. how close can congress get to what some states have done? >> it's still a question to be decided. because as we know, the white house really pushing for these stricter gun background check laws, universal background checks, and it's something the white house sees as their best politically viable option, you know, with public support for very strong for these kind of programs. but they're running into road politics here, concerned about the pushback from the, nra. and the president's speech was, we're not talking to each other, the sides don't listen to each other. he tried to take a tone of, i'm not taking your guns away by doing this. he's trying to directly address the fears of a large portion of gun rights advocates. and he's trying to make that case. but i don't know that he -- he
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may have run out of time on this. >> robert, the case that the president's going to make now is the case he's been trying to be making ever since newtown, that the tv ads don't seem to be moving a lot of members of congress. the president's personal appeals, heretofore, at least, they aren't working right now. we're talking about universal background checks maybe happening, and if not universal background checks, some sort of background checks, but after newtown, we were talking about assault weapons bans, high-capacity magazine cartridges. how has the nra been so successful in the messaging wars, robert costa? >> i don't think they've been so successful, at least from the white house perspective. i've been watching a lot of the final four this weekend, and it seems is like the president has a shot clock in front of him. the time for him to really get something through congress is diminishing. and the obstacles in front of the president are very real. for instance, connecticut governor dan malloy, he can call the nra a circus clown, et cetera. but when it comes to pressuring congress, the nra is doing quite a good job.
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you have democrats and republicans very cognizant of what the nra is pushing on universal background checks, pushing against those universal background checks. i think when congress comes back tomorrow, they're going to have a very difficult position. a lot of people aren't eager to pass something. >> david, about a dozen republican senators have joined together to talk about filibustering the gun bill in the senate. this is what john mccain said on "face the nation" over on cbs this morning. take a listen. >> i don't understand it. the purpose of the united states senate is to debate and to vote and to let the people know where we stand. >> so you'd encourage republicans not to filibuster? >> i would not only encourage it, i don't understand it. what are we afraid of? >> david, how much damage could a filibuster do to the gun debate in the senate? >> well, i think the -- i mean, if it comes to a filibuster, that just adds another layer of challenge for the white house. and i think that the president wants a vote, even fit goes down, i think because they're trying to say, look, if you oppose it, you know, put your money where your mouth is, vote against it, and we'll see what
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happens. 2014. and they're going to try to use this in some areas where there might be more support for background checks or things like that. if you go with a filibuster, it might be a way for the senate republicans and others who don't like this idea to just really stall and drag out the clock. and i think, as we've seen, public polls show that while the public does support some of these measures, they also have a less urgency right now, compared to right after newtown. every day that goes by on this is more problematic for the white house. >> robert, a lot of folks are talking about the pressure from the nra and potential backlash, primary opposition, maybe. is anyone concerned about backlash for a lawmaker who doesn't do something? is anyone concerned -- is anyone talking about potential backlash for an action? >> very much so, craig. when you look at politics, it's not just about primary fear in each party, but you have a lot of districts, especially in the house, that have suburban districts, they have a lot of centrist and independents. and if you're a moderate republican or a moderate democrat, you're looking very seriously at a background check bill. you may not be able to support
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an assault weapon wan, but if you go back to your independent type voters and you say you didn't back this, you could be in political hot water. >> on fox news sunday, the president's top senior adviser, dan pfeiffer, said that the white house knew that not all gun proposals would pass. do you think, david nakamura, that the white house focused too much on a wish list as opposed to something that could have passed much easier. >> maybe, but, you know, the president is being criticized, being criticized again on the budget for doing this, which is coming to the middle and starting from there, with the more conservative side, and sort of giving up too much early on. there's a lot of pressure, if we remember those days, after newtown, to do something big and sweeping. i think maybe what people are more concerned about is that the president waited too long. don't we know all these ideas? don't we have an assault weapons ban? don't you have to send president biden on a tour to talk to every group imaginable? yes, you want buy-in, but time is of the essence, maybe go for something big and sweeping and put it on the table so we can get to these negotiations faster and there's more public pressure
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still on the background check issues or those things you think ultimately you might be able to get. >> robert costa, i want to pivot really quickly to the other big story this week. of course, the white house expected to unveil its budget wednesday. in that budget, the president is expected, again, once we see the details, it's expected that he will call for reducing social security benefits or at least changing cpi. so reduction of social security benefits, reduction of medicare, medicaid as well. how significant this? or is this just, pretty much, the same thing that the president was talking about back in december as well? >> it's an little bit of both. give the president credit in the sense that he is trying to talk minor entitlement reform, but it's not the big kind of entitlement reform to medicare that republicans are looking at. but the president is trying to do some political messaging here. he's trying to say, i'm willing to do something on social security, can you work with me on this, can we do something small bore. it remains to be seen whether it's a real gesture that the republicans are willing to accept. >> david, is it a starting point that might bear some fruit, or
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is this an exercise in few tilt? >> he's say, i've thrown this out before, i'm going to throw it out again. he's taking heat from the left saying, what are you doing, you're starting too much, we're going after social security entitlements that you said are going to hurt retirees, why are you doing that? he's already taking some heat, but the white house is taking a calculated gamble that this is showing good faith, that the president is saying that he's serious, and whether it's a grand bargain or a smaller bargain, he wants that and this is probably their best bet. >> go ahead, robert. >> real quick, the real problem for the president, as much as he wants to do some parts of entitlement reform, republicans remain very steadfast against tax increases or even revenue increases. so how the president's able to do this is probably impossible. that's why there's probably not a deal. >> from david's optimism to robert costa's pessimism, all
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right. stay right there. tere tere tere tere tere teresa heinz kerry joining her husband overseas. we'll get your headlines from the brain trust. other side of the break. come back. [ male announcer ] it's simple physics... a body at rest tends to stay at rest... while a body in motion tends to stay in motion. staying active can actually ease arthritis symptoms. but if you have arthritis, staying active can be difficult. prescription celebrex can help relieve arthritis pain so your body can stay in motion. because just one 200mg celebrex a day can provide 24 hour relief for many with arthritis pain and inflammation. plus, in clinical studies, celebrex is proven to improve daily physical function so moving is easier. celebrex can be taken with or without food. and it's not a narcotic. you and your doctor should balance the benefits with the risks. all prescription nsaids, like celebrex, ibuprofen,
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secretary of state john kerry is on a multi-nation tour right now and going along for the ride is his wife. teresa heinz kerry. now, mrs. kerry has been, to put it mildly, a political hazard at times to her husband. you might recall back in the 2004 presidential campaign, she snapped at a reporter when he questioned her use of the term "un-american." take a listen. >> you said something i didn't say. now, shove it. >> you shove it. you shove it. and just days before the election, when her husband lost to george w. bush, she remarked in a "usa today" interview that
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laura bush never held a real job. she later corrected herself, since mrs. bush was, technically, a school librarian and a teacher as well. so, what headline will teresa heinz kerry make on this trip? back with me now, the brain trust, david nakamura, robert costa, aisha moody mills still stuck in traffic, serious wl, i not kidding. david, what's she going to say on the trip? >> i don't know what she's going to say, but i went with the food metaphor, "the ketchup hairess relishes putting extra mustard on her husband's pitch for mideast peace." >> you took it far. >> i think there's higher stakes here. i'm not sure what the role of a secretary of state's spouse is unless you're bill clinton, to really make a lot of news. and i think it would be best if we don't hear too much from her making news, especially talking about north korea and some other high-tension issues here. >> robert costa, how about you? what's yours? what's your headline? >> instead of soy sauce, i'm
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looking at korean ketchup. i think teresa heinz kerry is going to be at her husband's side, but i don't think she's going to be a political figure in the same way she was during the 2004 presidential campaign. this is going to be about secretary of state kerry going to huddle with south korean leaders, other asian leaders and middle east leaders, but especially looking at the north korean crisis and what america can do ahead of that. >> aisha moody mills is not here, but we're going to share her headline. there it is. "hot dog! teresa heinz kerry relishes opportunity to spread democracy again." that, again, not my headline, her headline. this trip this she's on, david, secretary of state john kerry, this is a substantial overseas trip, if you look at it, when you look at turkey, look at israel, going back to the middle east, again. the president just there, secretary kerry stuck around after that trip. what does he hope to accomplish with this trip, specifically the middle eastern portion of it? >> i think we talked about it earlier on the show, a previous hour. you know, with the middle east
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part, he's going to sort of introduce maybe a new way to start laying the groundwork for a potential return of talks, peace talks. something the president talked about in general terms during his visit. i think this is a robust trip for secretary kerry. he's still new at the job. he's trying to go around the world, in asia, i think he has a little less experience. i've talked to some folks in the asian diplomatic community are very interested to see what tone he takes over there, especially with china, how much pressure to put on them, especially with north korea. you have a lot of hot-button issues. it's a good chance for the secretary to get out there and make his case known. >> david nakamura, robert costa, always a pleasure. you guys did double duty. you had to pick up the slack for one of our brain trustees. >> traffic here is almost as bad. >> i remember the traffic there vividly. that is it, that is all, that's our show for this week. come back, next week, 2:00 eastern, we will have ezekiel manuel, brother of chicago's mayor, has got a new book out. also, former regulatory czar,
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cass sunstein. we'll have a special show on i immigration, next sunday at 3:00 eastern. meanwhile, keep it right here for news updates throughout the evening. have yourselves a fantastic sunday night. ♪ [ male announcer ] from the way the bristles move to the way they clean, once you try an oral-b deep sweep power brush, you'll never go back to a regular manual brush. its three cleaning zones with dynamic power bristles
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